Vulnerability of cholecystokinin-expressing GABAergic interneurons in the unilateral intrahippocampal kainate mouse model of temporal lobe epilepsy

Young Jin Kang, Ethan M. Clement, In Hyun Park, Lazar John Greenfield, Bret N. Smith, Sang Hun Lee

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

8 Scopus citations


Temporal lobe epilepsy (TLE) is characterized by recurrent spontaneous seizures and behavioral comorbidities. Reduced hippocampal theta oscillations and hyperexcitability that contribute to cognitive deficits and spontaneous seizures are present beyond the sclerotic hippocampus in TLE. However, the mechanisms underlying compromised network oscillations and hyperexcitability observed in circuits remote from the sclerotic hippocampus are largely unknown. Cholecystokinin (CCK)-expressing basket cells (CCKBCs) critically participate in hippocampal theta rhythmogenesis, and regulate neuronal excitability. Thus, we examined whether CCKBCs were vulnerable in nonsclerotic regions of the ventral hippocampus remote from dorsal sclerotic hippocampus using the intrahippocampal kainate (IHK) mouse model of TLE, targeting unilateral dorsal hippocampus. We found a decrease in the number of CCK+ interneurons in ipsilateral ventral CA1 regions from epileptic mice compared to those from sham controls. We also found that the number of boutons from CCK+ interneurons was reduced in the stratum pyramidale, but not in other CA1 layers, of ipsilateral hippocampus in epileptic mice, suggesting that CCKBCs are vulnerable. Electrical recordings showed that synaptic connectivity and strength from surviving CCKBCs to CA1 pyramidal cells (PCs) were similar between epileptic mice and sham controls. In agreement with reduced CCKBC number in TLE, electrical recordings revealed a significant reduction in amplitude and frequency of IPSCs in CA1 PCs evoked by carbachol (commonly used to excite CCK+ interneurons) in ventral CA1 regions from epileptic mice versus sham controls. These findings suggest that loss of CCKBCs beyond the hippocampal lesion may contribute to hyperexcitability and compromised network oscillations in TLE.

Original languageEnglish
Article number113724
JournalExperimental Neurology
StatePublished - Aug 2021

Bibliographical note

Publisher Copyright:
© 2021 Elsevier Inc.


  • Basket cells
  • Cognitive impairment
  • Disinhibition
  • Perisomatic inhibition

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Neurology
  • Developmental Neuroscience


Dive into the research topics of 'Vulnerability of cholecystokinin-expressing GABAergic interneurons in the unilateral intrahippocampal kainate mouse model of temporal lobe epilepsy'. Together they form a unique fingerprint.

Cite this